Reducing resistance from laser-formed contacts and damage from laser process has helped increase efficiency.
High resistance and damage during the laser process have been some of the challenges that Natcore Technology had to overcome when creating its all-back-contact cell, the Natcore Foil Cell.
To toughen up the Natcore Foil Cell, the company has devised a laser-based contacting process that has reduced resistance from its laser-formed contacts. The laser-formed base contact is critical in the cell as high resistance at the contact and damage during the laser process limit the capability of solar cells.
Despite only a few runs with this new structure, the device efficiency has already reached 19.5%, increasing by nearly two percentage points over 17.5% since June. At 17.5%, Natcore’s cells were already roughly equivalent to commercially available cells. And last year, proof-of-concept cells were delivering just 4% efficiencies.
Additionally, cells from this laser-based approach have a 0.7V open-circuit voltage (Voc). The process was developed in Natcore's R&D centre in New York.